The red planet

Num7

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The red planet

Since we had no thread for general discussions related to Mars, but not related to the Pheonix Mars lander, let's start this thread !

Here's an interesting article, they say that Mars could have been a water world in the past, because they think to have found some phyllosilicates in many places. I can't find any good explanations about phyllosilicates, except those in the article.

Water world: New data pinpoint Mars' wet and balmy past
Water bathed the surface of southern Mars for millions of years, helping to create an environment theoretically capable of nurturing life, according to a new study into the planet's mysterious oceans.

Scientists at Brown University in Rhode Island used an instrument aboard a US spacecraft, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, to hunt for traces of phyllosilicates, or clay-like minerals that preserve a record of water's interaction with rocks.

They found phyllosilicates in thousands of places, in valleys, dunes and craters in the ancient southern highlands, pointing to an active role by water in Mars's earliest geological era, the Noachian period, 4.6 to 3.8 billion years ago.

"These results point to a rich diversity of Noachian environments conducive to habitability," the authors conclude.

An intriguing find was of deposits in the pointed peaks at the centre of craters. These peaks are generally taken to be underground material thrown up by an impacting asteroid or comet.

For water to be present in such peaks, it must have been present as much as five kilometres (three miles) below the planet's surface, the paper suggests.

"Water must have been creating minerals at depth to get the signatures we see," head researcher John Mustard, a professor of planetary geology, said in a press release.

The subsurface phytosillicates were formed at relatively low temperatures, of between 100 and 200 degrees Celsius (212-392 degrees Fahrenheit), which implies that Mars was not only wet but also relatively temperate at the time.

"What does this mean for habitability? It's very strong," Mustard said. "It wasn't this hot, boiling cauldron. It was a benign, water-rich environment for a long period of time."

The paper, which appears on Thursday in the London-based science journal Nature, is the latest assessment to conclude that Mars was once awash with water, one of the ingredients for life.

Close-up investigations by US landers and imaging from orbiters have also suggested that frozen water may lie close to the surface in some areas today, and possibly in abundance.

Still unclear is what happened to the oceans. The leading theory is that the planet's once-thick atmosphere began to thin, causing the precious liquid to evaporate into space. Only a thin atmosphere, consisting overwhelmingly of carbon dioxide, remains today.
Water world: New data pinpoint Mars' wet and balmy past

Num7
 

kcwildman

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Re: The red planet

Numenorean7 said:
They found "wood" on Mars. Nasa released tis pic not so long ago. Keep in mind that what you see is probably a rock, at 99.99%.
http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gall...040524a/site_B115_navcam_180_cyl_L-B118R1.jpg

Right over the said wood block, there's what looks like a white orb.
It would be cool to have a color pic.

Num7
dude thats a water tower from the railroad they showed us an old cross tie in the pic. I pulled a couple dozen out of the back yard where some dumbass made a sand box. looked just like that one. I did notice the tracks from the rover where it ran rite over the thing thow. so it could be a shadow or some such. but still odd
good find there 7
 

Num7

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Re: The red planet

See it that way: the piece of wood is too big for somebody to forget it on the set. ;)

I still wonder what are these orbs on most of the pics. Every time their's something "strange" on a pic, like a wood block, a foot print or human skull, there are some of these orbs far away in the distance.

Num7
 

Keroscene

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Re: The red planet

I know I saw that picture and that white dot in the background and thought it looked liked a camp fire. I think that "orb" Numenorean is the protective shell and or parachute that the rover landed in. It is wicked bright though, the sun must be reflecting off of it.
 

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